Hughes, Neil, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), The United States of America
A smart city is ‘a place where traditional networks and services are made more efficient with the use of digital and telecommunication technologies, for the benefit of its inhabitants and businesses,’ according to the EU definition. In this context ‘networks’ consist of the many related infrastructures such as electricity, gas, heat, water, telecommunications and transportation/mobility; and ‘services’ are both commercial and public, including policing, waste, transport, commerce, housing and health, among others. Smart cities build on the concept of advanced energy communities (AECs) and integrate these holistically. These electrically contiguous areas will integrate multiple customer-owned distributed energy resources (DER) such as energy efficiency, demand response, customer storage, photovoltaic (PV) or other local generation, electrification, electric vehicles, combined heat and power (CHP), and district heating and cooling systems. Utility customers will look to these advanced technologies to provide benefits in comfort, convenience, and cost. Such communities also can achieve larger societal and utility goals such as decarbonisation, grid hardening, and grid support. An AEC can either be a new community development or involve reconstruction and retrofit of existing residential, commercial, or industrial communities.